Elderly getting increasingly marginalised due to digital illiteracy, says Agewell Foundation survey

By: | Published: September 24, 2017 4:49 PM

Narendra Modi government is leaving no stone unturned to make it happen fast and that too for all sections of society as well as age groups, including the elderly as this will bring them into the mainstream of national development.

digitisation, digitisation in india, digitisation campaign in india, digital illiteracy, digital illiteracy in india, old age digital illiteracy, old age digital illiteracy in India, Agewell Foundation, financial literacyDue to fast-paced modern lifestyle, ever-widening generation gap and their physical well-being not being the best, older people remain at the receiving end. (Image: Reuters)

With an aim to boost digitisation in the country and make it a powerful tool in the hands of the common man, the Narendra Modi government is leaving no stone unturned to make it happen fast and that too for all sections of society as well as age groups, including the elderly as this will bring them into the mainstream of national development. In India, it has been observed that younger generations are well-versed with modern IT and communication gadgets, but when it comes to older people, millions of them find it difficult to learn using computers and other tech gadgets at their age as their eyes start failing and fingers are not as nimble as they should be to operate gadgets and also because they have never used them before. Due to fast-paced modern lifestyle, ever-widening generation gap and their physical well-being not being the best, older people remain at the receiving end. Looking to shed light on the current situation of the elderly in this regard, not-for-profit NGO Agewell Foundation conducted a survey that reflects the impact of the changed environment on their lives.

The study revealed that around 85.8 per cent of the total 5000 elderly respondents were found to be digitally and computer illiterate – which included 76.5 per cent elderly men and 95 per cent elderly women. However, around 75 per cent of the digitally literate respondents said that lack of computer skills and digital illiteracy is affecting their life during their old age adversely.

“Almost 85 per cent respondents stated that their younger family members avoid communicating with them due to their relatively more demanding lifestyle and the inability of older family members to understand the modern digital language of communication,” the report said.

However, 69.8 per cent old people shown their interest in Digital financial literacy program out of which 84.2 per cent were men and 58.2 per cent women. Approximately 51 per cent respondents claimed that there are hardly any facilities where they can learn computer applications and get digital training.

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